Serial No. 109-232: Enhancing the Global Fight to End Human Trafficking: Briefing and Hearing Before the Committee on International Relations, House of Representatives, One Hundred Ninth Congress, Second Session, September 26, 2006   [open pdf - 521KB]

From the opening statement of Christopher H. Smith: "When I held the first hearing on human trafficking as Chairman of the Subcommittee on International Operations and Human Rights back in 1999, only a handful of countries had laws explicitly prohibiting the practice of human trafficking. Individuals who engaged in this exploitation did so without fear of legal repercussions. Victims of trafficking were treated as criminals and illegal immigrants and had no access to assistance to escape the slavery-like conditions in which they were trapped. Few seemed to be even aware that this modern form of slavery was taking place and even some of those who did failed to recognize it as a violation of fundamental human rights. However, the situation has changed markedly over the past 6 years. Significant credit for improvements must be attributed to the enactment of the Bipartisan Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, together with the two reauthorizations of that act in 2003 and 2005, all of which I sponsored. These three laws created a comprehensive framework for combating trafficking in persons abroad as well as the trafficking of American girls and young women within the United States. These three laws are superb examples of what we can accomplish when we work in a bipartisan way." Statements, letters, and materials submitted for the record include those of the following: Ricky Martin, John Miller, and Wade F. Horn.

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Serial No. 109-232
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